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Do join an SR class today

Old 03-02-2016, 03:09 AM
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Do join an SR class today

How would you feel if you found a couple of people here at SR who are exactly in the same place as you right now? People who are scared of making the big decision? People who have made the decision but donít trust themselves to keep it? People who have years of sobriety under their belts and want to talk about emerging thoughts and feelings?

They're here. All of them.

Having one or two or more in your life can strengthen your resolve, can underscore your decisions, can allay your fears when you are scared and most of all can love you and be your friend.

It all begins with joining a Class at SR.

Iíd like to welcome you to meet the people who have done that for me and for each member of the Class of March 2013.

Our class is up to our third anniversary.

Our longest sober member (just over three years) is wehav2day fondly known as We who begins with a story, one that may be familiar to you Ö

I'm one if those people who would quit for a while, get to six months, life would get exponentially better, then for one stupid reason or another I would drink and completely unravel all of the good that had happened. I did this three times.

The last if these times, I went to outpatient. I found SR by googling "90 days sober" and joined that day. Three months later I drank again. I can't remember why. Every time I drank, I hoped for that magical moment when I wouldn't want to drink anymore. That moment of clarity when everything would "click" into place.

That relapse lasted until February 22, 2013, the day I realized that magical moment wasn't going to happen. That my only chance at true recovery was to stop drinking and chase it with everything I could use.

I did pretty well. I attended some aa and came back to SR with one key change from before. I posted completely honestly. Before, I would post truthfully but not honestly. Everything I posted before was true, but I avoided posting anything that was "negative. " I wouldn't post my fears or worries, or any scary feelings I had, for fear of hurting anybody or setting a negative tone.

That was stupid, 'cause that's exactly what this forums here for! Through sharing everything, honestly AND truthfully, we get help and help each other.

When I got to six months, that was my scary time. So I posted about it like crazy and shined a bright light on my fears. Addiction hates light, honesty, even love. Wanna **** your addiction off? Shine a light on your fears. Be honest about everything. Learn to love yourself again.

At about 9 months sober, I knew I had to grow. I started to feel more unsettled again. So I did the aa steps with a sponsor. That's what really tipped the scales for me. The work of the steps taught me that it's ok to be fully honest, the world won't stop turning. They taught me to forgive myself for all of the dumb stuff I did. They taught me to love myself because everyone deserves that.

There are other ways to get there, I've seen people do this all over the forums using various methods. in any case, I really do think the magic formula is a lot of work but totally worth it: honesty, openness/light,and love of self and others.

You can do this!!!


Trachemys aka Trachy is probably our most fervent advocate of the wonderful Class system here at SR. Our Trachy is our southern gentleman, our quick draw humourist with a heart of gold.

Marchia in Aeternum

For a very special reason.

I started in the original month after a family intervention. I had a nasty detox at home, alone. But, I found this place after the initial nastiness and knew I had found something. I knew from the start that this was a group of
special people. I had a good thing going here...

and then a massive relapse. I went AWOL. Back into the bottle to the point that I nearly died from drinking. I asked whatever powers
that be to help me. After the initial physical recovery, something told me to try SR again.

So, I came back. A year and four months after my initial signup. I joined the July 14 class and
started settling in again. It was, as always, a struggle. Then, a 2013 Marcher found me wandering the halls. Demanded I return to my original class. Told me there was no other place for me. And everyone welcomed me with open
arms as if I had never left.

These people have helped save my life. My family is pretty perplexed that I have a global
support group, 24/7/365, on computer and phone. But, they see that it works.

Marchia in Aeturnum means Marchers Forever.

What that means is that if you see someone struggling you help that one stand.

If you stumble and fall, reach up.

Someone will be there to grab your hand and pull you up.

Then we lock arms and march on.


Our lovely toots|1 has met a number of Marchers, sheís been a lynch pin of our group, told us about living in the US and UK and kept us focussed while we laugh. Her talents are incredible, they nearly match her warmth.

SR was my first online community. I had no idea how to use it properly and mostly read and posted on newcomers posts to begin with. I lapsed several times coming back to the site in desperation in March 13. I found a link to the class for that month and looked it up. Suddenly I was reading about people who were going through many of the same issues as myself, and enduring similar struggles. I tentatively introduced myself and began to open up as I became closer to my cyber friends. Over the ensuing weeks and months we bonded and began to trust. With trust comes the ability to truly open up and ask for support. I have laughed, cried and argued with my classmates, met two of them face to face; the bond we have is truly unique, these people know and understand me in a way my loved ones just can't. I couldn't have made it this far without them. We have one rule in our class; never say sorry. We all faltered, some slipped, but there is no judgement, just total support. Always.

Big sister Saskia (Sass/Sassy) is our kind, gentle, razor smart, very aware of feelings, experienced Marcher.

Iíve been drinking alcoholically off and on since I was 21 Ė and am now 71. The longest time I went without drinking was 13 years. In the earlier years, I could stop so easily but always went back when feeling stressed. After gastric bypass surgery, I suddenly found I couldnít stop anymore. I joined SR in May 2012 and made many attempts to stay sober. When that thread went quiet, I joined the March 2013 group after yet another relapse. Although it took another almost another 1.5 years to become reliably sober, the Marchers helped keep me focused and always provided support as I struggled. Watching so many staying sober and also being supportive helped me to keep ramping up my efforts until I finally did an outpatient program and went on meds. Throughout everything the Marchers were my daily ďgo toĒ family. Now they are like a very close-knit and loving family Ė the kind we all wish we grew up with. I met two of the Marchers f2f and it felt immediately like we had known each other for quite awhile. I wish I could meet them all!

One of our special guys is Ken, my sober twin (we stopped on the same day three years ago). Ken is like a brother to me, I feel his solid, warm, humorous presence every time I check in, heís a friend to all of us and has met a couple of Marchers. I could not be more proud of him.

Hello SR World,

As it has now been three years since our class "The Class of March 2013" has started I thought I would like to let everyone know what being a Marcher has done for me.
When I first gave up alcohol was living in a town that celebrated overindulgence, I knew that without some kind of support I would never make it past a few days. Logistics made face to face meetings not an option, so I took to the internet.
When I found this site I read for about an hour, and then decided to join up. I really didn't know what to expect.
After a few days of wandering through the threads I happened to come across the March 13 thread and jumped in. That was undoubtedly the best thing I could have done.
Here was a group of people that were going through the same issues I was having, all new to the world of sobriety and scared out of our minds.
We were able to openly discuss our issues without fear of being judged. We leaned on each other and supported each other during those critical first few months.
After we really started to get to know each other, I think we all realized that we really do like each other.
I have had the privilege to actually meet up with a few of my classmates and its amazing how we felt like old friend right away.
The Marcher group is so much more that a "little internet chat group" as one therapist called it.
They are my strength and I consider them family, not only for my drinking addiction, but for all parts of my life.
Being a Marcher to me means that I will always have someone to talk with, rant to, and hopefully encourage to continue on with their journey, and I know that if I am having a good day, they want to hear about it, and if I'm having a bad day, they want to hear about that as well.

So, if you're new to this site, or have been around for a while and are still struggling, please check out the Class Threads, join in and talk whenever you need to about anything you want to,

Thanks for being here

BuddinK ( Ken)


Our Northlander whom we call North is our warm, intelligent, articulate man who stands on mountains. Heís someone who envelops us all in a bear hug, in words, in feeling, in sharing, in being the delight that he is.

I came to drinking later in life Ė no problems until my late thirties when my brother died and I began to self-medicate my grief. Iím mortified to recall the years of water bottles full of vodka, writing notes to myself so I could recall what I had said the night before, and all the time spent hungover. The trips to public recycling bins with empties, the stops at various liquor stores during working hours so I could run home during the day and refill bottles. Smoking all the time to cover the alcohol on my breath.

When I came to this site I was 52 and desperate. I had survived Stage IV cancer and was throwing away my second chance at life because of grief, depression, frustration, and an inability to accept myself or others as we are. What I found in the March 2013 class was a group of empathetic folks who offered nothing but understanding and support. I think at one time or another just about every Marcher took their turns at being supportive, desperate, angry, joyful, panicked, and calm. We laughed a lot (occasionally too much - sorry Dee!), cried on occasion, and shared just about everything, from the profound to the mundane.

Because of the class of March 2013 I will be three years sober on March 1, 2016. Itís been their support and sharing of their own struggles that has made all the difference to me. Alcoholism was so lonely, and sobriety can be too, but no matter what, I have my class, and they remind me of whatís important and how far we have all come together. I didnít think I could do this, and I couldnít, but WE did. Big love to my fellow Marchers 2013. I think you saved my life.


Our Duffster/Duff is our beautiful sporty southern lady, with her quick sense of humour, her lovely empathy and her complete honesty. Duff is a woman of substance.

February 11, 2013. After twenty plus years of binge drinking I woke up on this morning knowing I had to change something. The anxiety, the guilt, the shame, while all familiar were now for the first time in my life affecting other people besides myself. Those two people are my sons who were just little babies at the time. That morning I had to force myself to get one son ready for and to preschool while managing to care for my other infant son. The guilt was overwhelming, the anxiety almost crippling. Yet I had to keep moving on, pretending that I was completely fine and not so sick that I didnít think I could put one foot in front of the other. There was no going back to hide in bed for the rest of the day until the withdrawals passed.

That is where this journey began. The results of a spectacular binge the night before. I very much wish I could say that was the day that I finally found sobriety and it stuck. It wasnít that easy for me. I relapsed in October of 2014 and it took me a few months to get back on track. I wasnít looking for moderation when I picked up that drink, I have never had any interest in moderating. I want to get drunk. Black out, mind-numbing drunk. That definitely was my intent when I picked up that drink on my 42 birthday.

Itís true what they say, that when you pick up a drink after any amount of sober time you go right back to where you left off. My sobriety journey hasnít been the easiest. My ďplanĒ consists of SR and sheer will power. My goal for staying sober is to be here and present for my sons. That is a pretty big motivator but I am finding that I need more. I have tried one AA meeting since my relapse and it made me uncomfortable. Not the people, it was just hard for me to face my own alcoholism. Strange since Iíve known I was an alcoholic since my early 20s! In fact, I went to many meeting then, I just didnít have the strength then to become and stay sober.

SR is my saving grace. When I struggle, which is more often than I like, I come on here and reach out to my Marcher friends and they lift me up and keep me going. They recognize that Iím at a place in my sobriety where I need more and they always have suggestions. I believe that the next step in my sobriety program is to become active in AA and to complete the twelve steps. I long for what others have found through working those steps. So why havenít I committed to taking that next step? I donít know! I guess we each get there in our own time.

I am so grateful and thankful to my March class! I even had the pleasure of meeting one in person and he was just as Iíd imagined him. It was like we were old friends, after all, heíd heard many of deepest secrets and never judged me for them. Iíve never found judgment from anyone in my class, only unconditional love. I hope you find that too. Stick to this journey and you will find the peaceful, healthy life that you are seeking. Lean on the folks here at SR. Weíve all been where you are and many of us are still finding our way.

And then there is our wonderful DD/digdug, the youngest of us, our bright shiny urban professional with a heart of gold, a volunteerís heart, an old soul in a young body who always makes us proud. I'd adopt him as my son in a heartbeat.

On paper, I had it all Ė professional job, nice apartment in the city, girlfriend, etc. But I drank secretly to escape the anxiety of my own mind. I thought I was a high functioning alcoholic, until suddenly I wasnít. At the end of my drinking career, I couldnít go more than a few hours without alcohol. I had dug myself so deep, that my body just gave out. I ended up in the ICU, on a ventilator, in a coma, with only a 10% chance of living. But I was lucky enough to wake up.

For me, I needed a complete reset. That meant 30 days inpatient rehab, followed by 6 months of outpatient, as well as daily AA meetings, getting a sponsor, working the steps and joining the March class of 2013 on Sober Recovery. For me, rehab saved my life, and AA & SR gave me back everything I had lost and then some. My relationship at the time didnít work out for obvious reasons, but it gave me time to work on myself

Working the steps of AA was the best experience of my life, as I am a better, more caring person because of the process. The steps have changed the way I view situations, approach my life, and interact with people. Through service and sponsoring other men, I am able to give back the way I was helped so selflessly when I came into the rooms.

SR has been a great resource for support as well. I donít get a chance to post as much as I did when I was a newcomer because my life is full, but rest assured, I browse the Newcomers forum every single day just to stay green. I didnít join the March í13 class until I already had several months sober, but the Marchers welcomed me with open arms. The Marchers, along with my real-life support system in AA helped me get through some major hurdles in my first year, including have a double hip replacement when I was 8 months sober - a direct result from my drinking.

I am a completely different person now than I was drinking. In sobriety I have been able to achieve great things. My career has taken off. Iím getting married next year to someone who has never seen me take a drink or a drug. I have regained the trust and love of my family. But these things donít matter as much as the changes that have taken place on the inside. I view the world now not as what it can do for me, but what can I do to contribute. I have learned what true happiness is. I have a connection with something greater than myself that guides me to do the right thing on a daily basis.

I am a firm believer that if a screw-up like me can get and stay sober, than anyone can if they are:

1) willing to do anything for their recovery;
2) open-minded enough to try every recovery option, even if they may initially think an option ďisnít for them,Ē; and
3) honest with themselves about alcohol/drugs and sobriety.

My one regret about sobriety is that I didnít ask for help sooner. Sure, bottoming out to within inches of death was a huge wakeup call, but it didnít have to be that way. I could have gotten off the elevator earlier, but I chose to ride it all the way to the bottom. I do not recommend this approach to anyone. I saw asking for help as a sign of weakness, but now I see it as a sign of strength. I used to envy those who have walked through the doors of AA on their own volition. They are so strong and brave. But I earned my seat in AA fair and square and Iím not giving it up.

I got sober at 31, but it is never too early or never too late. Alcoholism isnít about how old I am, how many years I drank, how much I drank or what my drink or drug of choice was. It is about how it affected my life and the lives of those around me.

So donít be like me: donít delude yourself into thinking your situation is unique, donít be afraid to ask for help, donít be quick to write off all of the recovery options available to you, including AA, rehab, therapy and other face-to-face support, and finally, donít ride it out until itís too late. Not everyone gets a second chance.

Best of luck to you all!


And then there are so many others. Serene, biminiblue, venuscat and others have joined us at various times as have other SR people. Babs was shy this time but she is a much loved member.

Some inaugural Marchers have moved on but we never forget them and especially we never forget our Josie/lifetplant who lost her life far too young.

And Jim, if you are reading, we never forget that you started the Marcher 2013 Class. I sometimes wonder if ourís was the only class not initiated by Dee or Anna?

Anna and Dee, what can we begin to say to you?

Your patience with our Class ó especially in the beginning ó will never be forgotten by any of us, you have been faithful friends to the Class of March 2013, generous and kind mentors, who are truly dedicated to each one of us here on SR and every class group.

All of us in the March 2013 class share a pride in our class and SR. We want everyone on SR to feel the love, the fellowship, the support, and the pride of being sober with a class of SR members. Three years down the track we are almost ready for Part 46 of our Class thread and weíve only just begun.

And my Marchers, Anna and Dee thank you for our class. You indeed raise me up to more than I can be.

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Old 03-02-2016, 03:28 AM
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Marcher

A magnificent post, inspiring and full of grace.

I can only agree with your sentiment - join an SR class, it will save you !
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Old 03-02-2016, 04:18 AM
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(((Marcher)))! My dear, you have done all of us Marchers very, very proud! Reading all of it brought tears to this old lady's eyes. My heartfelt gratitude to you and all of our Marchers, past and present, who have contributed so enormously to my life. To all of you -
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Old 03-02-2016, 04:28 AM
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Dee and Anna, I don't say 'thank you' for all that you do nearly often enough, so here's a giant one -

Thank you!
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Old 03-02-2016, 05:15 AM
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Marcher,

Thank you so much for sharing these valuable insights. The Marchers of 2013 are indeed a testimony to the power of SR classes. Mine, the Class of August 2013, proved essential to my sobriety and recovery. We're still here, too, continuing to give and receive support from one another.

I strongly encourage newcomers to join their class, for all the reasons you and your classmates so eloquently described. The classes are one of the best features SR offers!
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Old 03-02-2016, 05:18 AM
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I joined the August of 2009 class, and it really helped me get sober.
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Old 03-02-2016, 07:09 AM
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Heartwarming & equally awesome post
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Old 03-02-2016, 07:51 AM
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Thanks, Marcher 13

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Old 03-02-2016, 01:27 PM
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Bump
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Old 03-02-2016, 01:51 PM
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Joining an SR Class is a wonderful experience along the road to sobriety.

I found so much support in my Class of February 2014; it is no longer very active but I have been adopted by the Class of October 2014 and the Class of July 2013 and still enjoy the Class experience.
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Old 03-02-2016, 02:14 PM
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SoberLeigh, Venecia, Zebra and Kaneda I'm glad you find the class experience so good, it's a fabulous support indeed.
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Old 03-02-2016, 05:14 PM
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What a world, what a world. There are Titans walking the halls of my world. I hope you find Titans in yours.
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Old 03-02-2016, 05:47 PM
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Simply beautiful and exquisitely moving. Brought a tear to my eye.
I congratulate you all on your individual and collective accomplishments!
Xoxo
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Old 03-02-2016, 05:52 PM
  # 14 (permalink)  
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Awww! Congratualtions Marchers!!! I didn't realize so many of my favourite members were from this class!
I love my class too, though I was a member of almost every class for nearly a year after that haha!
But that group always has my heart and was the one I stuck with, I love them all very much. Xoxo
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Old 03-02-2016, 05:54 PM
  # 15 (permalink)  
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Also kinda felt like drinking tonight, reading this this thread completely reminded of what staying sober and SR is all about.
I really don't ever want to be out there all alone drinking again.
And fittingly Amy Winehouse is on the jazz radio station right now.
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Old 03-02-2016, 06:25 PM
  # 16 (permalink)  
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Neither Anna or I started the Class threads
I can't even remember the user name of the guy who started the first one in 2008 (my apologies, Mike)

At first they were member-led in that a member would start them (Like Jim and the March 2013 thread) but gradually the responsibility devolved to me, and it's been a great thing to be 'part' of so many groups

I thank the March 13 thread for their contributions here and elsewhere - congrats on 3 years you guys

and RIP lifetplant. Still miss our chats.
Gone way too soon.

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Old 03-03-2016, 12:40 AM
  # 17 (permalink)  
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So now I'm a hot mess after reading that and listening to that song! Thanks for putting everything together Marcher, and for coming up with the idea in the first place. I wholeheartedly recommend anyone joining SR to find your class and share.
I know that without SR I would still be drinking, I also know that with the support and caring of my 'classmates' I have moved my life in ways I would never have believed.
Thanks guys X
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Old 03-03-2016, 12:09 PM
  # 18 (permalink)  
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Oh Marcher! That is so beautiful. Thank you so much for suggesting this, for collecting all of our stories, for putting it together, adding your lovely words and descriptions, and for posting it. So proud I am to be in a class with you and all of our Marchers.
xoxo
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Old 03-03-2016, 03:03 PM
  # 19 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
Neither Anna or I started the Class threads
Dee I didn't express that well, it reads a little ambiguously. What I was referring to was the actual creation of the class thread through the software. I remember our Jim was anxiously anticipating a new class thread back in 2013 so he took the initiative and created the very first Class of March 2013 thread.

Found it!
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Old 03-03-2016, 05:30 PM
  # 20 (permalink)  
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Ah yes, I do remember Jim - and Chuff and Josie and others. I don't think I will ever forget them!
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